Today CNBC has confirmed that Samsung's President of mobile has told them that a smart speaker is in fact on the way "soon". That timeline isn't specific, but at least it's something. Koh said Samsung wants to create a "fruitful user experience at home with Samsung devices, and [he] want [s] to be moving quite heavily on it".
Samsung has promised further features for its smart assistant such as Bixby Vision, which will allow users to point their phone camera at an object and get relevant information. Otherwise, it's also possible to set a wake-up command, such as "Hi Bixby". With the recent launch of Bixby in more than 200 countries, work on Samsung's smart speaker can commence once again.
In addition to offering quick commands, Bixby can also be personalized to support custom voice commands and shortcuts for multiple functions at once, according to Samsung. Samsung may need to either wait or accept that many people won't use the speaker to its full potential. It will be interesting to see how consumers react to Samsung's iteration of smart speakers. Support for other languages, devices, and third-party apps are expected to expand over time, Samsung added.
Originally set to roll out in the USA and South Korea in the spring with the arrival of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus flagship phones, Bixby's arrival was delayed until July.
But at the same time, Samsung's Vega would be a significantly late arrival to the speaker market. Upcoming products include models from Microsoft and Harman Kardon that feature its Cortana virtual assistant and the Siri-powered Apple HomePod.